Posts tagged: research impact

Impact Case Study Resource Fund 2019/20

Based on REF2014 data, a 4* impact case study is estimated to be worth at least £324,000 to an institution in QR funding over the course of the REF cycle. This is the equivalent value of around 5 to 6 outputs.

Given that the weighting for impact has increased in REF2021 from 20% to 25% of the overall total, the University recognises the need to invest in its impact case studies to ensure the strongest return possible.

Therefore, in order to support our REF2021 impact case study submission, Research & Knowledge Exchange are making available a central pot of money to be accessed by our selected case study leads to assist with case study activity in the final year of REF impact generation (1 August 2019 – 31 July 2020).

Applications can be made for up to £2000 and must be match-funded by the School/Research Centre for the purposes of enhancing impact case studies in the following ways:

  • Data analysis – activities that may be required to identify whether impact has occurred/will occur during the remainder of the REF period
  • Impact generation – activities that seek to enhance the reach and significance of existing impacts to strengthen the case study
  • Evidence collection – collation of ‘sources of corroboration’: for example, interviews that can form the basis of testimonials and quotes, tracking down of guidelines, reports etc. that cite the research, media mentions, quantitative data (sales figures, cost savings etc.)

Suggested Activities

The following list is not exhaustive:

  • Engage temporary assistance (e.g. PhD student or similar) through UniTemps to undertake data analysis, assist with stakeholder engagement or collect evidence
  • Hold public engagement events to capture participant feedback
  • Undertake longitudinal surveys to monitor behavioural/perception change over time
  • Create website for dissemination purposes and capture of feedback (blogs etc.)
  • Design social media strategy to drive impact online

Please note: this is an open call for applications throughout the 2019/20 academic year.

To find out more, please contact:

Emma Sutton, Impact, Engagement & Environment Coordinator at research-impact@salford.ac.uk

Or speak to your School Impact Coordinator:

CSE – Prof Apostolos Antonacopoulos

ELS – Prof Mike Wood / Prof Andy Miah

H&S – Prof Neal Hazel

SAM – Dr Pal Vik

SBS – Prof Phil Scarf

SOBE – Prof Peter Walker

Why not take this opportunity to check out the impact resources available on our intranet site:  https://www.salford.ac.uk/ref


Festival of Research – A Showcase for Research Impact

The Festival of Research is month-long programme that showcases the research being carried out across the University of Salford and brings together academics, students, industry and the public. The Festival launches this year on 17th June and continues for a month with each week focusing on a different theme or audience:

Week 1: Researcher Training & Development Week

A week dedicated to training, workshops and development opportunities.

Week 2: The University of Salford Research Beacon Conference

Each day this week is dedicated to a different Research Beacon theme (Industry 4.0, Global Health & Ageing, Energy & Housing, Sustainability & Environmental Quality, Resilience & Leadership) and will attract specialist internal and external audiences.

Week 3: Postgraduate Researcher Week

Salford hosts both the International UK Council for Graduate Education Conference (UKCGE) and the Salford Postgraduate Annual Researcher Conference (SPARC).

Week 4: Salford’s Community Fair

The final week focuses on engaging the public and local communities on and off the campus through widening participation events, such as Research in the Park, The Living Library and School Open Days.

Festival of Research Logo
17th June – 12th July 2019

Weeks 2 and 4 in particular offer our researchers a fantastic opportunity to showcase their research and its wider impact.

Targeted Impact Events

As part of the Festival we will be running a number of specifically impact-related events to help inspire our researchers to think more closely about the impact of their research and how they can best improve its significance and reach in the future.

Highlights include:

Wednesday, 19 June 2019: Developing Your Narrative Sessions with Chris Simms, Royal Literary Fund

Chris is holding individual 40-minute mentoring sessions for researchers looking to develop their narrative and storywriting skills, whether it be for the purpose of formulating impact case studies, writing funding bids, making applications for research festivals or similar. All enquiries: research-impact@salford.ac.uk

Wednesday, 3 July 2019: Fast Track Impact REF impact case study workshop with Prof Mark Reed

Mark will focus specifically on the REF and invites our current impact case study leads to discuss their own case studies, while learning what makes a good impact case study, how to improve writing around impact, as well as evidence collection tips. To book: https://myadvantage.salford.ac.uk/students/events/Detail/682548/mark-reed-fast-track-impact-wo

Further information on the activities taking place during the month-long Festival of Research can be found at: https://www.salford.ac.uk/researchfest

Join the conversation: #salfordresearchfest @Festivalofrese1


Guidance on collecting impact evidence

If you are looking to generate impact from your research, please ensure that you engage from the start with the University Impact, Engagement and Environment Coordinator, Emma Sutton, and your School Impact Coordinator** so that the impact can be tracked and evidenced on an ongoing basis.

Key points to consider when you start a new research project:

  • What will be the indicators of impact? How will success be measured throughout and what needs to be captured?
  • Complete a stakeholder analysis to identify the potential beneficiaries of your work
  • Clearly demonstrate a pathway to impact: what steps will you take to engage with your stakeholders and how will you measure any benefits to them?
  • Articulate the significance and reach of the potential impact
  • Use existing and well-understood baselines and gold standards to measure your impact

Some examples of types of impact evidence that you could obtain:

  • Testimonials from organisations and individuals
  • Quotations from high-profile figures (obtained through interviews)
  • Participant feedback
  • Media mentions
  • Quantitative data (e.g. improved company sales, percentages demonstrating cost savings etc.)
  • Published reports as a result of research conducted
  • Guidelines/policy documents that cite your research

**Look to use both qualitative and quantitative data where possible!**

Points to remember:

o Ensure that information is robust and credible

o Ensure that information is independently verifiable

o Link evidence to clear targets and indicate whether these were met or exceeded

o Provide evidence of research being widely disseminated, e.g. through tweets, blogs, access to websites, press coverage, broadcastings, downloads, sales

o Find ways of communicating the research as it progresses to develop wider impact along the way (not just at the end)

o Conduct exit interviews with the business if ending relationship/researcher if leaving institution – evidence of impact must be captured before departure

o Be able to demonstrate that without the research, the impact would not have occurred: how has the research made the difference?

Remember: the earlier you begin collecting and collating your impact evidence, the easier it will be to create your own impact case study!

Further information on impact evidence collection can be found on the REF intranet at: www.salford.ac.uk/ref

**School Impact Coordinators are as follows: CSE – Prof Apostolos Antonacopoulos ELS – Prof Mike Wood / Prof Andy Miah H&S – Prof Neal Hazel Institute for Dementia – Dr Gemma Lace-Costigan SAM – Dr Pal Vik SBS – Prof Phil Scarf SOBE – Prof Peter Walker


Confirmed Impact Guidance for REF2021

With less than 2 years to go until our REF submission (deadline: Friday, 27th November 2020), the final set of guidance materials for REF2021 (including guidance on submissions and panel guidelines) was published on 31 January 2019 following wide consultation with the sector in late 2018. The final guidance documentation is available at www.ref.ac.uk/publications/

What does this mean for impact?

The salient points to take from the final REF guidance on impact case study submission are as follows:

Definition of impact for the REF

For the purposes of the REF, impact is defined as an effect on, change or benefit to the economy, society, culture, public policy or services, health, the environment or quality of life, beyond academia.

Impact includes, but is not limited to, an effect on, change or benefit to:

• the activity, attitude, awareness, behaviour, capacity, opportunity, performance, policy, practice, process or understanding

• of an audience, beneficiary, community, constituency, organisation or individuals

• in any geographic location whether locally, regionally, nationally or internationally

Impact also includes the reduction or prevention of harm, risk, cost or other negative effects.

Impacts will be assessed in terms of their ‘reach and significance’ regardless of the geographic location in which they occurred, whe

ther locally, regionally, nationally or internationally.

Impact also includes the reduction or prevention of harm, risk, cost or other negative effects.

Each of the four main panels (A, B, C, D) have slightly different requirements for the following:

• Continued case studies

• Indicators of quality for underpinning research

UoA Leads/Deputies are therefore encouraged to look closely at the panel guidance for their particular panel when reviewing impact case study drafts.

Submission requirements

• Each submission must include impact case studies (REF3 template) describing specific impacts that have occurred during the assessment period (1 August 2013 to 31 July 2020) that were underpinned by excellent research undertaken in the submitted unit. The underpinning research must have been produced by the submitting HEI during the period 1 January 2000 to 31 December 2020.

• This may include, for example, impacts at an early stage, or impacts that may have started prior to 1 August 2013 but continued into the period 1 August 2013 to 31 July 2020. Case studies will be assessed in terms of the reach and significance of the impact that occurred only during the period 1 August 2013 to 31 July 2020, and not in terms of any impact prior to this period or potential future or anticipated impact after this period.

• When writing case studies, submitting units should refer to the guidelines for presenting quantitative data set out in the ‘Guidelines for standardising quantitative indicators of impact within REF case studies’. These guidelines have been developed to enable more consistent presentation of quantitative evidence in case studies. This document (and a summary thereof) can be found separately at www.salford.ac.uk/ref under Impact Evidence Collection.

• More than one submitted unit (within the same HEI and/or in different HEIs) may include the same impact within their respective case studies, so long as each submitted unit produced excellent research that made a distinct and material contribution to the impact. In such cases, units may provide common descriptions of the impact arising, where they so wish.

• Impact case studies continued from examples submitted in 2014 will be eligible for submission in REF 2021 as long as they meet the 2021 eligibility criteria, including the length of the window for underpinning research and the assessment period for the impact described.

Go to www.salford.ac.uk/ref to check out all the REF guidance and more.


Research Impact Fund – Special Call

To support researchers at Salford in becoming more ‘impactful’, the University operates an internal Research Impact Fund, which offers:

• up to £1000 that must be match-funded by your School/Research Centre, to individuals and groups in support of activities that reflect the University’s desire to increase the impact and reach of its research, and/or highlight strategic engagement that builds upon the University’s vision to pioneer ‘exceptional industry partnerships’.

Or

• up to £1500 that must be match-funded by your School/Research Centre, to identified REF impact case study leads seeking to increase their dissemination and impact generation activities for the remainder of the current REF cycle.

Applications should be aligned to one or more of the following themes:

  • Strengthening interaction – seeking to nurture and build upon relationships with non-academic partners, aligning with strategic goal of the University – the Industry Collaboration Zones
  • Broadening research – in line with REF and funder requirements, to expand the reach and influence of research outcomes, in addition to introducing greater partner contribution into the design of future research
  • Promoting social benefit – demonstrating how the application of research-based knowledge might lead to practical and focused solutions at a range of scales

Suggested Activities                                                                                                 

The following list is not exhaustive:

  • The translation of research findings for non-academic audiences (e.g. policy reports, leaflets, audio-visual materials, etc.)                                 
  • Events or workshops with a focus on non-academic stakeholders (dissemination or activity-based)
  • The trialling of creative modes of public engagement (e.g. exhibitions or film screenings)
  • The commercialisation of research findings through IP protection and/or business engagement
  • The formation or strengthening of networks outside academia (e.g. visits/meetings to build relationships, or the initial development of a web/social media platform)
  • Exchange or placement activities (e.g. within an external non-HEI organisations, or through the placement of a non-HEI partner within the University)
  • The development of pedagogical materials (e.g. online training resources or ‘train the trainer’ sessions)

The 2018/19 Fund is currently open for a special call for new applications, with a deadline of Friday, 1st March 2019.

Further details and the application form can be found on the Impact Funding page at www.salford.ac.uk/ref

If you would like to find out more about the Research Impact Fund, or impact in general, please contact Emma Sutton, Impact, Engagement and Environment Coordinator on research-impact@salford.ac.uk


ESRC Festival of Social Science – November 2018

The University of Salford, alongside partner institutions Manchester Metropolitan University and the University of Manchester, are running over 30 events across Manchester and Salford as part of this year’s ESRC Festival of Social Science, 3-10 November 2018.

The Festival showcases Manchester social science research to a broad non-academic audience. This brings together an eclectic blend of activities designed to celebrate the social sciences, including discussions and debates, exhibitions, film screenings, walkabouts, family fun days, schools visits, workshops, and lots more.

Aims of the Festival

Through its Festival of Social Science, the ESRC aims to:

  • Encourage, support and create the opportunity for social science researchers to engage with non-academic audiences
  • Promote and increase awareness of the social sciences and ESRC’s research
  • Promote and increase awareness of the contributions the social sciences make to the wellbeing and the economy of the UK society
  • Enable the public to engage with social science research
  • Engage with teachers and young people and to raise their awareness of the social sciences.

 

Contributions from our researchers in the School of Health & Society:

/ Catherine Thompson & Bruno Fazenda

Using VR nature environments to improve performance and wellbeing

Saturday 3rd November 10am – 5pm / Manchester Museum

 

/ Philip Brown, Lisa Scullion & Tim Isherwood

The power of design: exploring the role of creative research dissemination

Monday 5th November 5pm – 8pm / New Adelphi Building, University of Salford campus

 

/ Jack Wilson, Anthea Innes, Andrew Clark & Anya Ahmed

University of Salford dementia and ageing hub showcase

Tuesday 6th November 2.30pm – 4.30pm / G05 The Old Fire Station, University of Salford campus

 

/ Cathy Ure, Penny Cook, Liz Burns, Margaret Coffey & Suzy Hargreaves

Putting communities in charge of alcohol: a health champion model

Tuesday 6th November Time 5.30pm – 7.00pm / The Friends Meeting House, Manchester

 

/ Donna Peach, Gabi Hesk, Deanna Edwards & Andrea Pepe

Developing community engagement with the social sciences

Wednesday 7th November 12pm-8pm / Atrium, Adelphi Building, University of Salford campus

 

/ Tina Patel & Laura Connelly

Divided communities? What the Brexit future means for people in Salford

Thursday 8th November 1pm – 3pm / G05, The Old Fire Station, University of Salford campus

 

/ Michaela Rogers

Ageing with healthy relationships: overcoming barriers to help-seeking when experiencing domestic abuse

Friday 9th November 2018 – INVITE ONLY / The Pankhurst Centre, Manchester

 

/ Ian Cummins & Toni Wood

True crime and punishment: exploring the influence of cultural representations of crime

Saturday 10th November 10am – 3.30pm / MediaCity UK

 

/ Dilla Davis & Annie Nichols with Manchester Malayalee Cultural Association (MMCA)

After a heart attack – role of cardiac rehabilitation

Saturday 10th November, 2pm – 4pm / Woodhouse Park Lifestyle Center

 

 

Why not come along and join in the activities?

Full details of all events across the week are available at:  www.esrcmanchesterfest.ac.uk.

Tweet your comments using the hashtags #esrcfestival and #McrESRCfest


We need to talk about research impact (again)

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REF

Original post 

University of Salford’s Impact Coordinator – Chris Hewson discusses why we need to talk about research impact:

Over the last eighteen months, much has been written and said about impact, and how Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) can effectively, and efficiently, place themselves on a secure footing in preparation for the next Research Excellence Framework (REF). Nonetheless, it could be argued that the fevered animation generated by REF2014 has led to a prolonged and ongoing hangover. For most academics and administrators the experience of co-producing impact case studies was a forensic and thought-provoking, albeit ‘seat of the pants’ and largely extemporised experience. The refrain consistently repeated in strategy offices across the land goes something like this: ‘…there is absolutely no chance we’re going to execute our REF impact strategy in such an unsystematic and post-hoc fashion come 2020.’

But we are, aren’t we? As Julie Bayley and Casper Hitchens note, “the burden of effort and pressure to ‘find impact’ led to impact fatigue and a tarnished view of the concept” [i]. Their remedies are sound, and were arrived at independently by a number HEIs of in the aftermath of 18th December 2014; the need for greater planning and (ongoing) data collection, the institutional normalisation of impact, the co-ordination of both internal and external engagement processes, and so forth. The authors playfully mimic the language of HEFCE, noting the dawning of “an opportunity to significantly and demonstrably… change how we achieve impact.

Read more…..